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How to Hire the Right Employee for Your Small Business

Small business owners have an endless sea of responsibilities on their plate. One of them is the need to hire the right employees who can help your startup company reach new levels of success. The wrong hire could drive your company into the ground with one costly mistake—not to mention, tax your patience, consume your attention, require endless training, drive customers away, and disrupt your established work culture.

When it comes to hiring, you need to think beyond basic qualifications and experience. Does the candidate have a good work ethic? Will they get along with the rest of your team members? Can they uphold the level service your loyal customers know and expect?

There’s a lot to think about, but we’re here to provide essential advice on how to hire the right employee for your small business so that you can effectively achieve your goals this year. Whether you want to convert more leads, retain more customers, or earn more revenue, these tips can help you find the best person for the job.

  1. Establish Trust

First and foremost, you need to know that you can trust whoever’s hands hold the fate of your company. It may sound dramatic, but one bad apple could prove to be a devasting mistake, should they cause you an expensive lawsuit that drains your bank account and obliterates your reputation.

Although you can never be 100% certain of a candidate’s trustworthiness, you can gain valuable confidence by screening anyone you’re considering for the job. A background check can enlighten you to any red flags lurking in their past if you uncover a relevant criminal history, such as fraud, vandalism, or violent behavior.

The good news is that you don’t need to spend a ton of money for this type of assurance. How much is a background check? Depending on the company you use, anywhere from $0 to $20—which is a very small price to pay for peace of mind.

  1. Advertise Strategically
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If you want to draw the right candidates for your specific role, try to put strategic thought into your advertising locations. For example, if you’re opening a coffee shop, you might post a bulletin in a nearby library assuming that it’ll be seen by patrons who are already in the area and use your service. Or, if you need a graphic designer who knows how to appeal to Millennial audiences, you might scout social media for qualified leads.

Pro Tip: To ensure a candidate has the required skills for the role, consider asking them for proof of past work in the form of a portfolio, writing sample, or on-site assessment that verifies their experience.

  1. Define Company Culture

When you’re looking for talent that can mesh seamlessly with your company and its mission, you need to broadcast your culture loud and proud. Do this by developing your business website to include an “About Us” page and “Careers” page.

In most cases, candidates will look up any potential employer online to see if it’s someone they can envision themselves working for. Use this as an opportunity to showcase why you do what you do, or what inspired you to create your startup company. It’s not necessarily a matter of setting out to solve world hunger, but you should try to address a pain point your product or service aims to address.

Also, when browsing the “Careers” section, the potential applicant should get a clear sense of what it’s like to work for you as a boss. Can you offer any attractive perks, like the ability to work remotely from home, or the possibility of a flexible schedule? Ultimately, people try to seek employment at places where they’d be valued and fulfilled, so do your best to demonstrate how you care for all your team members.

  1. Conduct Panel Interviews

Finally, if you already have employees working beneath you, consider including them within the interview process. Everyone on the team should get a chance to chat with the prospective hire and provide you with input regarding whether they’re a good match.

They might have a better understanding of the nuanced skills the job requires, and if you take their suggestions to heart, you can better prevent internal discord from arising later on down the road.

Take your time and feel it out; with a slow, deliberate process, you’ll be able to find qualified applicants who’ll fit right in and validate your business ideas for long-term synergy and success.

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